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Ranking: Madison No. 8 healthiest city in U.S.

Madison had highest scores in low crime rates, affordable fresh produce

MADISON, Wis. - The Huffington Post has named Madison one of the country's 25 healthiest cities, according to a release.

Madison was named No. 8 behind San Francisco, Fargo, San Diego, Anaheim, Minneapolis, Salt Lake City and San Jose.

The rankings looked at disease incidence, depression measures, unemployment rates and FBI crime statistics to determine the country's healthiest cities.

According to the release, Madison had the highest scores in low crime rates and affordable fresh produce. The city also has the University of Wisconsin-Madison Arboretum, which includes prairies, savannas and 20 miles of trails.

Madison was the No. 1 pick for city life with more than 120 distinct neighborhood associations, according to the release. Civic involvement was also listed as a factor with opportunities to get involved in the university community or with capital-city politics.

According to the release, the community involvement extends to activities like riding the city's bike paths, cross-country skiing under the lights at the city's largest trail or paddling kayaks.

Staying healthy is also easy in Madison with the country's largest producer-only farmers' market, according to the release.

"This acknowledgement is great," said Mayor Paul Soglin. "They didn't even mention our beautiful lakes, access to B-cycles, or our incredible parks and the organized as well as organic activities there, and we still received a high ranking. We welcome the recognition and look forward to maintaining our reputation as a healthy place to live, work and raise a family."

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